Posts Tagged ‘Spooky’

Supernatural Televison 2

October 30, 2014

Here are couple more supernatural shows that I was able to dig up and sample.  Now that I mention the word “Supernatural” yes I realize that that show exists.  It is really good but my experiment here was to watch some stuff that was new to me.  That is why I’m not talking about Buffy, Angel, Supernatural, Charmed and a whole whost of good supernatural/creepy television shows.  I mean I could go on and on about how much I liked the Mockingbird Lane pilot but I’ll spare you guys that for now.  Onward.

Penny Dreadful (2 Episodes in)

I am an avid reader.  I have been a big reader since I was really young and some of the books I remember enjoying during summer reading were the classic horror novels.  I ripped through books like Dracula, Frankenstein, The Invisible Man and the Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  So imagine my excitement when they combined all those sorts of horror stories and added a dash of history of the day to make the story feel a little more authentic.  I still don’t know what to make of this show but it really is captivating and spooky and I really like it.  I can’t fully understand the plot yet but a lot of it looks like it is supposed to be a mystery so they are still pussyfooting around certain things.  It’s an incredibly powerful show with plenty of gore and foreboding so check it out.  Come for the Billie Piper and stay for the naked Frankenstein Monster.

The Strain (1 Episode in)

Holy shit.  This show scared the ever loving bejeezus out of me several times.  Leave it to Guillermo Del Toro to creep me out to a level where I kind of needed a hug.  Instead I had to settle for episodes of the Muppet Show (also a cure for the Woman in Black).  The show weaves together a lot of common fears like: harm to children, worms, disease, blood and the darkness  into a very scary tapestry.  We get Sean Astin who is always a good thing to happen to us.  We also get David Bradley who has acted in a lot but most recently as William Hartnell in An Adventure in Space and Time.  I don’t recognize anybody else but that’s not a bad thing.  It seems to have a solid cast who will have to deal with a supernatural/biological threat or something.  I definitely recommend watching it but with the lights on.

Sleepy Hollow (3 Episodes in)

I have found my new show to binge watch.  I started to watch this show and did not want to stop watching it until all of the episodes were behind me.  Still, I wanted to sample more shows and movies at the same time so I was torn.  There’s plenty of time to watch the rest of it anyway.  The show follows a version of Ichabod Crane who kills the Hessian mercenary but that mercenary also turns out to be the first horeseman of the Apocalypse.  Thrust into the modern age, the two of them and a police detective are locked in a fight for the fate of the world.  Even with all that the show feels very personal and vaguely true to the original Irving story. I’m not a stickler. I definitely recommend this one.

Halloween 2014

October 1, 2014

It is now officially October so, of course, I start to think a lot about Halloween.  The haunted houses and trails and mazes are opening to the public to scare the bejeezus out of them and pumpkins are showing up at grocery stores that are already flooded with candy.  All over the country people are sewing the finishing touches on their costumes and getting ready for all of the festivities.  I’m going to continue to get into the spirit myself as the days of this month continue to tick by.

Here in West Virginia, October came in rough and spooky with a huge thunderstorm big enough to force Brad and Janet to stop off at a creepy old house.  Of course, I sort of celebrate Halloween year round I just don’t advertise it.  I love most horror movies and I love the design of fake haunted houses and the lore of “real” haunted houses.  I love the imagery and the wicked, high energy feeling that I get when I know that Halloween is approaching.  True, I don’t really go to parties and I haven’t dressed up in years but I’m not into that stuff year around either.

If you read my blog (and you are right now. Hello!) then you will be seeing Halloween stuff throughout the month.  You may have already seen my review of Clownhouse but there are plenty of scary movies that I want to see and review.  It will depend on what I can easily get my hands on but I definitely have a wish list.  I usually skew towards the horror movies with a comic edge to them but some on my list are more dark and traditionally scary.

I will be continuing work on The Key, my own little ongoing horror serial.  I have yet to comment on The Key because I believe the posts should go by without comment.  The central theme of The Key is the struggle for control.  The thing that scares me the most in horror is the loss of one’s self or one’s self control.  When I read Grant Morrison’s Batman and Robin I was absolutely terrified by Grant Morrison’s Professor Pyg and his dollotrons.  A villain who transforms people into disfigured, mindless servants and the process is irreversible.  I shudder to even think about it now.

The other thing I am trying to do with the Key is to write an atypical protagonist.  A heroine who does not want to be part of her own story and regularly tries to check out of it.  Like Alice Hardy in Friday the 13th she only saves the day when she is forced to.  I really don’t want to talk too much about it because I feel like it takes the mystery out of the story.  I love writing it because it feels so different and exciting.

Other than that, I don’t know what may come but I’m getting excited.

Clownhouse (1989)

September 25, 2014

So it looks like it’s time to start the Halloween festivities early and the first stop on this year’s tour is the Clownhouse.  Hope you brought a change of underwear.

“I’m hoping for Killer Klowns but I’ll probably get Halloween Part 5.”

I really like cheesy horror movies with horrible effects and horrible writing.  I don’t like gross-out horror movies or torture porn movies.   Killer Klowns from Outer Space is definitely a standout among all of the horror movies that I have seen.  It was cheesy but it scared the crap out of me when I first saw it.  On the other hand, I never liked Michael Myers.  It was drawn out with no humor and just seemed pointless to watch if you’ve already seen the Friday the 13th movies.  Once again, Halloween 3 is the only one I like.

“My brothers and I were assholes to each other when we grew up but this is ridiculous.”

A lot of the time when we were growing up my brothers and I could sometimes be utter dicks to each other and even got into some heated wrestling matches or outright fights.  Still, when the chips were down we begrudgingly backed each other up.  I would have never squealed on either of my brothers for wetting the bed or mocked a phobia.  Still, the dynamic is actually pretty believable given the kids’ ages even though I like to think I was a lot nicer to my younger brothers when I became a teenager.

“Aw man, I was hoping for a supernatural clown movie.  Basically Fright Night with Clowns.”

Fright Night is another great, cheesy horror movie with just enough thrills to make you shiver but enough comedy to let you go home happy.  Looking back I don’t know why I expected this to be a supernatural clown horror movie.  I was probably spoiled by Pennywise, Killer Klowns and Poltergeist.

“Eleven minutes in and the protagonist finally speaks after being in at least four or five conversations.”

The film seems to follow the youngest brother who already has a fear of clowns from a previous encounter.  The film begins with his nightmare and the camera seems to follow him the most.  However, he remains stubbornly silent for a good chunk of the movie.  He is really good at looking terrified though which he does often.  Most of the lines in the movie go to the oldest brother who is an asshole.

“The Scary Fortuneteller has a dead eye and looks kind of like Hatchetface.”

I’m pretty sure she added nothing to the film although there’s a chance it could pay off later.  She was not very scary even if fortunetelling is a real skill in horror movies.  The great part was that she reminded me of Mona “Hatchetface” Malnorowski which is fun.  It wasn’t Kim McGuire, though, I checked.  Still, a great face for an old fortuneteller.

“Clowns are inherently creepy.”

They make a big deal of making the lead clown Cheezo act really creepy during their performance.  They don’t linger much on the other clowns but they’re not much better.  Something about the exaggerated movements and facial expressions and the unnaturalness of the face paint, I guess.  I started to wonder if the killers had already taken over the clowns’ identities.

“Ok Horror movie, you’re not supposed to evoke sympathy.  I’m not used to this.”

I suffer a lot from anxiety in public and especially anytime when I feel like I might be the center of attention or close to it.  If I was late to church as a teenager I would just not go rather than walk in and feel the stares of everybody around me.  I imagine that basically having a nervous breakdown due to being simultaneously confronted by clowns and public disgrace would have broken me permanently.  So I sympathize with the main character who is understandably distraught.

“You made me like the clowns before you kill them.  Thanks.”

The actors who portrayed the clowns are really, really good at being scary.  However, when we see them briefly during their downtime they are really fun to watch.  The lead clown is basically Ron Perlman with grease paint halfway removed from his face.  I honestly would have watched a movie about being in the circus starring these three clowns.  Too bad.  They must die.

“Kid terrified by clowns attracts killer clowns.”

Seriously, it must be like when you’re allergic to cats and all the cats want to say hello to you.   It doesn’t help that they take turns telling killer clown scary stories to further summon the villains.  Hurray for horror movie tropes!

“This movie is cliche city!”

The hero utters the phrase ‘We’ll be right back.’ several times.  A character keeps singing a song called ‘Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark’ which later comes out of a radio.  The protagonist spots the killers and when he tries to show his brothers they’re gone.  A character utters the line ‘Is someone in here?’ in a dark room.   Still, there’s a lot of fairly inventive stuff in the movie as well that I won’t spoil.  It just makes me roll my eyes but I guess it’s in a good way.

“So much good pantomime in this.  I’m starting to get legitimately creeped out.”

Great choice making the killers absolutely silent.  It could have ruined everything if they all acted like the Joker or Freddy Krueger.  Or it could have been awesome.  I guess we’ll never know.   The soundtrack adds a lot with semi-distorted circus music that makes my blood pressure spike a bit.

“Wow. Didn’t see that coming.”

I won’t spoil it but holy shit.  This just got real.  Oh wait, never mind no it didn’t.  Still, this is actually a great little horror movie.

“Shit did get real.”

Yeah, I tend to drop off from commenting somewhere in the last third of a movie if it’s any good.  It’s so easy to get sucked into a good movie.

All in all, I would recommend this little horror movie to any of my fellow horror fans.  The movie gave me goosebumps but was just lighthearted enough that it wasn’t one note.  The child actors aren’t ridiculously awful and in fact show flashes of brilliance and actually help carry the film.  As I mentioned, the pantomime is really, really good and what is usually done for laughs ends up being legitimately scary.  In fact, they get a lot of their scares by appropriating comedy routines and twisting them into horror.  Of course, without the soundtrack, this movie would not have been half as scary.   I watched the whole thing on Youtube so I know you can too.

The Key Pt. 3

September 1, 2014

(Click for Part 1 and Part 2)

Shadows. Chaos. Danger. Remember these words.

When Robin awoke or came to or whatever, she was sitting opposite the strange beetle man thing. She instantly shrank back against the seat and tried not to look in his eyes again. She felt still, so terrifically still like she would never move again. Not that she could not but she would not move even if she really wanted to. There was a profound difference between the two that she would have difficulty explaining to somebody.

On the edge of memory there was something she was supposed to remember. Maybe it was more than one thing. Maybe three? Her head throbbed with the pain of what felt like a hell of a migraine. Out of the corner of her eye she aw a bottle of whiskey which was only half full. She could taste it on her tongue and there was a glass nearby with her lipstick on it. The evidence was mounting in support of a hell of a hangover tomorrow. Robin remembered none of it. It hadn’t been her lips that touched that cup, had it?

The beetle thing stared at her. She could feel his gaze on her skin and it repulsed her. Where was her purse with her tazer. The mace probably wouldn’t work. At least, that’s what she thought when she pictured those beetle eyes.

“Are you ready to begin now?” It asked.

Its eyes blinked audibly and just for a moment Robin looked at it and then looked away. She had seen herself in shiny surface of its eyes. She looked around and saw only an empty bar around them. Her heart started to beat hard and fast again. She tingled all over. She guessed it was from all the quick deep breaths.

“Where is everybody? What did you do?” She asked.

“Oh. It is you again. She said it would have to be you. The bar is closed. I have done nothing. We have simply talked until the bar closed. It closed twenty of your minutes ago.”

“Oh God.” The thought hit her like a shock of cold water. Had she been gone so long?

It cocked its head to the side and stared hard at her. She realized her gaze had been drawn back to look at him almost against her will. “We do not have much time. The spell must activate. The die has been cast.”

“Who’s coming? Wait. Who is she? Who am I when I’m not me?” She could feel hot tears on her cheeks. She spent so much time trying to ignore the blackouts that doctors could not explain but now she was close to figuring it out. She was so close to the answers inside this beetle man’s skull. She had not realized how much she wanted to know the truth. It was like a fire in her chest. Though, maybe that was something else. The fire was too hot. She trembled with the force of it.

“There is no time. She has activated the spell already. Give me your arm.” It said in a forceful tone as it reached for her. Robin was so overcome and startled that she did not even flinch. As he touched her, the fire within felt like it was expanding toward her skin. It felt like it was fighting to come out of her.

She looked down as a tattoo crept across her skin. The pain was like a thousand paper cuts being slowly coated with iodine. Her eyes watered but she was sure the tattoo was of a great dane. The Mark of the Hound he had called it. As it walked off of her skin and onto its hand, she could feel the fire and the searing pain subside. She slumped back into her seat as she watched the hound crawl up into the sleeve of its trench coat.

Suddenly a sickly smell filled the air. It smelled almost like the mix between vinegar and rot and something else she could not identify. A fine black mist started to stream from the beetle man’s pores and then its eyes and mouth and nose. At first she thought the beetle man was screaming but the screams were coming from the mist itself.

The beetle man was smiling and it looked so at peace. If she wasn’t so confused and afraid she might have been happy for him. It was a him now and not an it. His brown eyes opened and he was human. His gray mottled skin gave way to a rich brown, revealing what looked like somebody of Indian descent but it was hard to be sure.

The screaming mist floated up into the air for a moment and then streamed toward the ceiling with purpose. It slipped out of sight and Robin decided this was a problem for a future time. For now her body shook with exertion and there was a strange man with a magic tattoo somewhere on him sitting there. To say the least, this was the strangest night she had ever experienced.

“Where am I?” He asked, rubbing his eyes and looking around. He had no accent and then she felt embarrassed that she was surprised by this.

“Anne’s Eyes Pub on Bond Street. Don’t you know?

“Lady, I have no idea what’s going on. I just know that it’s time to go home. My head hurts and I have no memory of how I got here or anything else for a bit. I probably drank too much. I’ll get out of your hair and grab a cab home. You should probably do the same.”

“No wait. Don’t go. You have to explain what’s going on.”

“What’s going on? I just told you that I don’t know what’s going on. The bar is closed and it’s time to go home. That’s all I know. You’re freaking me out the way you’re looking at me. I’m out of here.” He stood up so fast that even Robin was dizzy. He was halfway to the door before she could even open her mouth again.

“Please. I need you to tell me who I am.”

He turned only slightly, looking over his shoulder. His trench coat swung slight with the motion. “Lady, I’ve never met you before.”

He slammed through the door and left only a jingling bell and Robin with her head in her hands.

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